Lucky I guess…. (93% off designer find!)

I think I have some magical power. I’m constantly drawn to sales.  I walk in a store and I just gravitate toward … AMAZING deals. Does this happen to everyone or am I just lucky?

So, I stopped in TJ Maxx tonight (yes, I know my last post was about TJMaxx too… But I was on a “last minute” search for spanx without having to drive all the way to the mall). After finding what I actually went there for, I did a quick loop around the jewelry counter: where my husband picked up a sterling silver chain for $16.99 and I got a shiny gold and blue fashion necklace on final clearance for $12!!

But what was sitting on the jewelry counter: a pair of Kate Spade gold glitter heals that retail for $328 for…. $59! Over 80% off – In my size!!!! Unfortunately, I look like a bent-kneed giraffe walking in 4″ heals so I opted against them.  So, theyre still up for grabs!

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After jewelry & shoes I swing by the home section. Last stop? Dresses. I go to the rack and there’s a beautiful Badgley Mischka Collection gown hanging on the front of the rack, with the original $990.00 price tag. The TJ Maxx price was $249.99, then marked down multiple times for a FINAL price of $69.00.  93% off – insane? Possibly one if the BEST discounts I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot!  Let me just add, this dress was perfect.  Not one snag or defect!

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If you’ve followed me for a while, you’ll know that finding deals like this is NOT rare for me. But really – 93% off is pretty awesome!

‘Till next time!

Shopping Season!

As Thanksgiving came and passed, Christmas is creeping upon us.  That means gift-buying.  If you haven’t started purchasing your gifts yet, you might want to get on that – after you finish reading this of course!

The sales this year were unlike anything ever before.  Black Friday crept back to Thursday afternoon, and was ‘extended’ until Saturday in most stores.  Then, we thought we’d have to wait another day for “Cyber Monday”, but retailers seem to think we’re all impatient! Cyber Monday has already started for many stores… All of these sale extensions make it much easier to shop around busy schedules.

I don’t know about you, but my weekend has been packed full: a large feast with family on Thursday, late night outlet shopping to walk off all of those calories, endless Christmas decorating on Friday, and a trip to New York on Saturday to see the Rockettes (amazing)!  In fact, I’m on my way to the Tran-Siberian Orchestra show in Hartford right now – but first, let me let you in on a few tips:

You don’t have to wait until “Cyber Monday”, because it’s basically “Cyber Weekend”.  Lord & Taylor and Bloomingdales already started their online sales early – as well as many others.  Nordstrom is offering an additional 25% off sale items – that certainly doesn’t happen often so it’s worth taking advantage of.  And my favorite sale today? Kate Spade is offering their best sale of the entire year – 30% off everything in stores and online (including sale items)!  You really can’t beat that.

Since I was already in NYC this morning… a late-morning trip down Madison Avenue was undoubtable before heading back to Grand Central Station.  Both my shopping experience on the 4-floor emporium of bows & polka dots, as well as my purchases were exceptional.  Lets just say I had quite a heavy bag to carry back home from the Kate Spade Flagship!  Keep an eye out for my upcoming post on all of my great finds!!

Lovely Lips (For FREE)! 

Hi all! 
I mentioned that you should check back to see more of my FREE birthday “purchases”, and here they are! 

I finally had some time to run to Ulta to pick up this awesome lip-gloss using my birthday coupon!  It’s not too sticky, has a tingly, minty feeling and has the perfect amount of shine.  It was also a $18 value:  

I also ran to Victoria’s Secret and used my $10 birthday coupon to get this dark-tinted lip-gloss for FREE: 
I didn’t pay a dime for either of these – Make sure to check out my post from earlier this month to find out how! Check back soon! 

A Pleasant Surprise – Double Coupons at Big Y!

I had a surprise on my Big Y receipt – doubled coupons!  I walked into Big Y with a very short list.  Napkins: specifically Bounty.  They’re thick, absorbent, and don’t leave lint – plus the Big Y Flyer showed they were B1G1F this week!  The Sunday newspaper had a page full of Bounty coupons too – one specifically for napkins, and one was more generalized for any Bounty product – so I used both.

When I got up to the register, I noticed as my 20¢ coupons were scanned, it was also applying another 20¢ off per coupon! They were doubling, and I wasn’t going to question it…

So, when I got home, I did a little research and found this on the Big Y website: “Manufacturers’ paper coupons with a face value less than 99¢ will be doubled.” That’s pretty awesome!  Although I did see this on their website as well: “Coupons cannot be accepted toward any item that is given ‘FREE’ based on our stores’ advertised sale. For example, if an item is advertised as ‘Buy 1 Get 1 Free,’ and the customer selects two, they may only redeem one manufacturers’ coupon.” Fortunately, my cashier wasn’t aware of the latter rule and let me use both coupons I had!

Since the Bounty Napkins were marked $2.33 each, on promotion for B1G1Free, and I used two 20¢ coupons that were both doubled – I got two 100 packs for $1.53 (that should have cost $4.66)! That’s 67% off!

Neiman Marcus is On Fleek for High-End Items at Low Prices!

Neiman Marcus. Once viewed as elite, once viewed as a store that I shouldn’t even peruse.  Well, I’ve completely changed my mind.  Yes, while scrolling through the sale items online I did see a $17,990 Zac Posen gown marked down to $10,749, but don’t let that scare you.  Not all of their items cost as much as used cars.  Keep browsing, and sign up for their e-mail – as soon as you finish reading this post!

Everything they sell is top notch. The best brands, the best quality.  Unfortunately, we all know that high-end designers come with a high-end price tag.  Personally, I do think the better fit and the higher quality fabrics warrant paying a little bit more, but that still doesn’t mean I’d pay full price.  Luckily, it all goes on sale!

Reasons I love Neiman Marcus:
1. Free Shipping
2. Free Returns
3. I live in CT, so when I ship things to my house, there is NO SALES TAX!
4. Their promotions.
5. The Midday Dash.

So, let me explain.  We don’t have a physical Neiman store in CT, so we don’t have to pay sales tax when we order! Say you see something at another department store, but it’s pretty pricy – the sales tax will add up.  Well, check online to see if Neiman has it, and if they do, you just saved yourself 6.35%!  They also constantly e-mail promotions – yesterday for instance, if you spent $200, you received a $50 gift card back.  The more you spent, the more you received! And last but not least, the Midday Dash. Every SINGLE day, an e-mail is sent out around 11am.  Click the link at 12:30 eastern time, and there are daily sales up to 80% off – only valid for 2 hours.  It’s hit or miss, but you can find some amazing deals!  Plus, if you have their credit card – you get $100 back for every 10,000 points you earn and complementary two-day shipping (5 points per $1 with additional point promotions).

The current sale? Up to 70% off thousands of items – apparel, shoes & accessories for the entire family.

Currently, there are 2280 dresses on sale on their website, so it doesn’t matter how picky you are, you can find something that fits your style, and your budget!  Some of my favorite finds on the site right now: A $595 Carmen Marc Valvo floral cocktail dress marked down to $178 = 70% off – perfect for a guest attending a summer wedding.  Need something more formal, say for a black tie event? How about a $998 Monique Lhuillier black gown marked down to $349 = 65% off.  If you need something more causal, how about picking up the Indikka Floral Maxi dress that was $225, now only $78 = 65% off.  And my personal favorite: a $700 tea-length Kay Unger dress marked down to $245 = 65% off.  If you keep looking, there are currently dresses as low as $44.  The options are endless.

Searches are easy.  Search by price, size, designer, color, length – you name it.  So next time you’re looking around for something, don’t rule out high-end department stores – or else you might miss out on finding an amazing designer item at an amazing price.

UPDATE: As of 7/20 all clearance is an additional 30% until 7/23!!!

‘Till next time – stay stylish 🙂

Patriotic Red, White & Blue Jean Shorts (at 84% off!)

The 4th of July has come and past.  Unfortunately, that means summer is almost over – even though it only ‘officially’ started 20 days ago.  That also means we only have 4 solid months before it starts to snow, yikes.  I’m definitely going to take advantage of summer while I can – and a trip to the orchard to pick delicious berries was the perfect weekend activity.

Between Memorial Day and the 4th of July, summer in general is about being patriotic.  The star & stripe True Religion shorts I found this weekend scream patriotism (but they’re still subtle enough for non-4th activities).  Saving money is pretty patriotic too – I could easily argue it’s just one step closer toward the so-called “American Dream”!

True Religion shorts (or jeans for that matter) are pretty great.  They’re soft, comfortable, wash well…. and they’re actually made in the USA.  How many items in your closet are actually made in the USA? Probably not many.

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I went into Marshalls to check out the home goods section.  Clothes weren’t even on my agenda but I happened to walk by the clearance rack.   I quickly pushed through last seasons rejects, and these awesome shorts were just waiting for me.   They were marked down to $29 from $178 – which was 84% off the original price! (Plus they fit perfectly!) #fabfound

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‘Till next time, stay stylish!

Sale on Sale on Sale…

It’s a great time of year.  The first day of summer was one week ago, and that means it’s finally warm enough to wear those cute crop tops, shorts & sundresses.  The beginning of summer also means that the autumn styles are making their debut and it’s time to clear the racks of this seasons top picks that came out in February (when it was still snowing in half the country)!

Banana Republic is on the endless list of stores that has almost everything on sale, plus 40% off the sale price, plus and additional 10% off when you use your Gap/Banana Republic Card!!  I was looking for some versatile traveling outfits that are easy to pack but still stylish (and to keep me cool while I try to endure the heat of the south for a few days).  I ended up finding this incredibly comfortable romper which started at $110.

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I picked it up for the sale price of $40.99… plus 40% off, with an additional 10% off since I used my Gap Card. $22.13 (total discount of 80% off)!

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Since no outfit is complete without accessories, I paired the romper with this Marc by Marc Jacobs leather cross-body bag that caught my eye in Saks Off-Fifth.  I knew it would go with almost any outfit – and what could be more perfect when you don’t have room in your luggage for 5 different purses to match everything.  It was marked down, PLUS an additional 50% off the sale price.

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The purse started off at $328, but was marked down to $233.99, and then kicked further down to $116.99 when taking off the additional 50% off.  At a total of 64% off, it wasn’t the best deal I’ve ever snagged, but definitely worth it for the quality and functionality!

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So to put it all together I added some timeless Ray-Bans and had an easy-breezy outfit perfect for my journey!  Mind the wrinkles… this photo was taken after a 6 hour car ride and a trolley tour in 95degree heat, yikes!

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‘Till next time, stay stylish, and cool 🙂

Dress for success (and savings)!

So I lost count of the compliments I received on my dress today.  I think it’s pretty cute too, but I’m biased since I bought it! Anyway, thought I’d clue you in on my little secret – I got an amazing deal on it (would you think any different by now)?!

Last time I was in Orlando, I had about an hour to kill so I headed to Dillard’s! They were having a huge sale and I went directly to the endless racks of dresses – all marked 50% off the sale price – time to browse.  This particular location seemed to be going out of business, but the sale has been going on for months and they apparently keep getting new merchandise – I just decided to call it a mystery sale and not ask any questions.

After heading to the dressing room, I ended up with this Eliza J. shift with jewels and a gold zipper:

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Dresses in this style are basically my go to: comfortable, easy care and stylish! So the purchase was a no-brainer! (And yes, my pony started off centered…. my hair is just way too heavy and my head is lopsided!)

The outcome? $25.90 from $148 – 83% off! (Half off the lowest ticketed price)

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‘Till next time! Stay stylish 🙂

Perfect gifts at perfect prices.

So, I still haven’t made a decision about which toaster oven to purchase.  I’m really indecisive…. I’ll get back to that another day.

However, I did make a another great purchase this past weekend – for Father’s Day! Now, my father would most likely be more happy if we saved our money and did not buy him a gift.  But I don’t think that’s fair – everyone deserves gift, especially on a holiday that focuses on them!  I had some hints as to what he needed… so I made my shopping plan:

I had a $20 rewards certificate from Marshalls that’s been floating around in my purse for a few months, so I figured I’d finally make use of that.  And where better to go than a store that sells just about anything and everything: clothes, shoes & accessories, home-goods, furniture, even gourmet food!

Enter Marshalls.  The front of the store was Father’s Day central – everything you could possibly think to buy for a man was laid out right when you walked through the doors.  Within 5 minutes, I found exactly what I needed: the perfect gift, at the perfect price… a versatile Brooks Brothers tie at a steep 83% off!  The original $148 tag was still on the tie, but it was marked to $24.99, that’s my kind of discount!

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When I got to the register, after aimlessly browsing the huge store for another hour, I used my $20 rewards certificate.  At a grand total of only $5 and change, what a steal, and what a great gift! That would barely buy you one Frappuccino.  So next time you need a gift, start with a store like Marshalls or TJMaxx that sells a huge variety of items, and you’ll be sure to find something at a great price! (They give gift receipts too!)

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And I promise the tie wasn’t cliché! It was what he was looking for!

‘Till next time… stay stylish 🙂

Same exact product. Two stores. Four different prices.

I promise to start posting about fashion again soon, but in a recent search for a new toaster oven, I had a little sticker shock! (a difference of over $65 for the same exact item in two different stores!)

I’ll backtrack to last night, when the bottom of my Black&Decker toaster oven caught on fire.  Unfortunately, I ended up having to use the fire extinguisher – neither the appliance nor my dinner inside were salvageable.  I was definitely more upset about losing the dinner than the toaster oven… it was 7:30pm and I was starving!

I didn’t really do my research on the Black&Decker.  It was very basic, and it definitely didn’t cost anymore than $30, but it did what it needed to do… up until the flames.

So now I’m in the market for a new one.  This time, I’m looking for a better, higher-quality brand and something with more features (like a convection oven).  After reading what feels like a million reviews, I’ve narrowed it down to a KitchenAid or a Cuisinart.

Lets say I decide on the Cuisinart TOB-60N Toaster Oven, Convection Oven & Broiler (I haven’t actually decided if I want this one yet but it’s a close contender)!  It’s $139.99 full price at Macy’s.  It’s $99.99 full price at Bed, Bath and Beyond.

After applying all valid coupons & promotions, and adding tax & shipping for the SAME EXACT PRODUCT:

$85.07 Total at Bed, Bath & Beyond either in store OR online, any day.
(20% coupon that can be used in store or online & there is free shipping over $49.  They even accept expired coupons, and they send new ones constantly via us mail, e-mail & text)

$94.74 Total at Macys Online today and tomorrow only.
(It’s on sale ONLINE ONLY for $99.99, plus there’s a 20% off coupon today and tomorrow only! But then they added $9.95 for shipping since my purchase was under $99)

$119.10 Total at Macys In-Store this weekend only.
(If I buy it in store, I don’t have to pay the $9.95 shipping, and I can still use the 20% coupon, but I don’t get the online web-buster price!)

$148.87 Total at Macys In-Store after June 21st!
(Well, the price jacks back up to $139.99 and the coupon will have expired)

So, you’re looking at up to a $65 difference depending on when, where and how you buy the same exact, brand new product.  Clearly if I chose the Cuisinart, I’ll make my final purchase at Bed, Bath and Beyond.  And I have even more incentive – I had a lot of Cashback bonus built up from my Discover credit card. For every $20 I traded in, I got a $25 Bed, Bath and Beyond gift card!  That’s another 20% savings! So I can use gift cards that I earned and not pay a dime for my new toaster oven!

Here’s the twist.  What if I choose to buy the KitchenAid instead? Guess what, even though it starts off $40 higher at Macys, that’s where I’ll buy it!  Why? It’s on sale, plus their coupons are valid on KitchenAid products so it’ll come out to a lower price than at Bed, Bath and Beyond! The Bed, Bath and Beyond coupons specifically exclude KitchenAid! I always read the fine print, in fact, I pretty much memorized the exclusions that every store has 🙂 Don’t be fooled. These stores are out to get you, they try to be misleading.  You should be out to get them instead!

I’m off to read a few more reviews!  Check back to see which one I choose!